The Aotea Quarter is set to regain its crown as Auckland’s centre for arts, culture and entertainment following the adoption of a 20-year strategic framework.
“Aotea Square and its surrounds may have lost out to facilities on the waterfront in recent years, but this framework has the potential for it to become just as seductive, offering non-stop entertainment, 24/7,” said Councillor Chris Darby, deputy chair of the Auckland Development Committee, and champion of a new vision for Aotea.
At the centre of exciting projects are a multi-million dollar facelift and additions to Aotea Centre, proposed redevelopment of the Civic Administration Building, and the introduction of the City Rail Link’s Aotea Station that will deliver people to Aotea’s doorstep.
The framework gives strong design direction for the four development sites that various council-controlled organisations have ownership and management over. This high-level design guidance will be utilised firstly in the future Request for Proposal for the Civic Administration Building site development and the Aotea Centre redevelopment.
The framework also recognises the increase in rough sleeping numbers in the city centre, which is particularly evident in the public spaces around Aotea.
A team has been formed to look into how low cost ideas such as storage lockers and 24-hour toilet provision could be provided, as well as working alongside agencies to investigate sheltered accommodation provision within the city centre.
“The framework doesn’t begin and end with the square,” says Councillor Darby. “The surrounding areas are also up for change with major development, transport improvements including light rail up Queen Street, improved pedestrian access and big increases in residential and student numbers. All these changes will help unlock the great potential of Aotea Quarter.”
The final framework document and report on public feedback to last year’s consultation is available on Shape Auckland.